THE CHAMPAGNE SPY: Israel's Master Spy Tells His Story by Wolfgang Lotz

THE CHAMPAGNE SPY: Israel's Master Spy Tells His Story

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After all the warp and woof over schnapps&pretzel spy General Gehlen, it's rather nice to settle down with Wolfgang Lotz, a ""mini-Bond"" Israeli agent who infiltrated Egyptian security in the early '60's (being only half Jewish he passed himself off as an ex-Nazi officer -- being uncircumcised helped establish his cover), got caught in 1965 (but not, he claims, until he'd scrounged enough military intelligence to help in the Six-Day War effort -- really?), and spent the next three years in a Cairo jail until finally he and his wife (also tried and incarcerated) were swapped for some captured Arab generals. What makes Lotz interesting (as for instance the pinched Gehlen is not) is that he's as breezy as he is cunning as he is preemptive -- only a man with indomitable spunk would ""set off to do a little spying"" dressed in ""slacks, a yellow sports shirt with blue spots and a bright red visored cap."" Lotz doesn't reveal any noteworthy secrets (""certain details still come under the heading 'Classified Material'"") but the particulars of how he went about his field work, got captured (the Egyptians found everything in his bathroom scales), and survived prison are fully -- and fascinatingly -- described. Whether Lotz' escapade was as significant as he implies is an open question, as open as those classified files are closed. But does it matter? Probably not -- the genre has always been closer to fiction than that microdot on the label of that bottle of Perrier-Jouet bubbly.

Pub Date: Oct. 23rd, 1972
ISBN: 0853036535
Publisher: St. Martin's Press